Residential Assessment

 Description of development

Summary Facts:


·         Approximately 1,536 people will live in the development. (This is based on the current average household size in Ealing Broadway ward, rather than on anything specific to this sort of development.)

·         An initial figure of 205 children in the development is argued down to approximately 77. (Both the initial figure and the arguments are unsound. A better estimate using LBE’s (actually GLA’s) formula is 175 children.)

·         No estimates are provided of the likely age ranges of the children, e.g. between pre-school, primary and secondary. (Experience in other private flats in Ealing would suggest that most children are pre-school.)

Comparison with the Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG)

There are a number of areas of conflict between the proposals and the SPG.

·         The plot ratio is clearly nearer 3:1 than the 2:1 suggested in the SPG.

·         The total floor space is much greater than the 30,000 sqm in the SPG. The proposals don’t quote the residential floor area and make it difficult to calculate, suggesting there may be something to hide.

·         The SPG says up to 350 habitable rooms per acre (=864.5 per hectare). The proposals include 1821 habitable rooms over 1.88 hectares, or 968 per hectare.

·         The buildings rise to 14 storeys rather than the maximum of 8 specified in the SPG.

·         The SPG says the residential parking should only cater for low car ownership. The developers have provided car parking space at what they would consider to be natural demand (43%) for this town centre site, rather than attempting to constrain demand.

·         The SPG asks for improved pedestrian access from the north-eastern corner of the site to Springbridge Road. No improvements are included in the proposals, although there is an exit point for residents at the north-eastern corner of the site.


There are quite a number of these, some of which will conflict with various planning guidelines or particularly the “first class design” requirements of the SPG.

·         There is a big problem with the amount of natural light in many of the flats. The documents suggest that at least a few flats don’t meet minimum guidelines. The biggest problem is for those flats on the many “internal corners” of the design. In addition, hardly any kitchens or bathrooms have natural light. Whilst this meets minimum standards, it is a major departure from the standards of the 20th century flats in Ealing. Almost all of these have (often ample) natural light to kitchens and bathrooms.

·         A high proportion of the flats are “single aspect” with their windows and walls only facing one direction. This is poor from an environmental point of view as it increases their heating and cooling requirements. The north facing flats will hardly ever be warmed by the rays of the sun. The south facing ones will be well baked in summer, with no north facing window available to create a through draught.

·         Some 2 bedroomed flats have 2 bathrooms, neither of which is en-suite. This aspect of the design looks as if it is driven by the lack of natural light for the rooms. Just look at flat 243 on the following extract from the plans:


·         The lack of ready figures on the sizes of the flats suggests that there is something to hide, e.g. that many will have little storage space and be too small for permanent homes.

·         There will clearly be quite a lot of children in the development. There is no provision at all for them, e.g. no on-site nursery (as in Grand Union Village), no play equipment in the residents’ terraces on the first floor.

·         There are no primary schools very near the development, save for the Church of England ones that many children will not be eligible to attend. All primary school children will have to cross at least one busy road to get to their school.

·         The community primary schools are all over 1km away. The distance is important as parents will normally accompany children both to and from school.  There may also be physical difficulties in expanding local primary school capacity to cope with the additional numbers.

·         There are no residents’ only facilities in the development to create a local community, apart from a small gym in the basement.

·         The “elderly rented” accommodation is just for what are described as the active elderly. There is the possibility of a communal laundry room, but nothing else. No common room, warden’s or guests’ flats or private outside area as would be expected in sheltered accommodation. A missed opportunity.

·         The outside noise levels are expected to be high, from both road and railway noise. The design is intended to keep internal noise levels acceptable by the choice of appropriate materials and the use of secondary glazing in some areas. This suggests that the noise levels will limit the use of the extensive balconies and roof terraces. It is not clear whether there will be either forced ventilation or air-conditioning available to all flats. Without this, there could be a serious noise/ventilation dilemma in the summer.

·         The refuse and recycling arrangements don’t seem to have been fully worked out. There will be chutes from the flats for 3 different categories of “waste”, but this isn’t enough to deal with all the recycling categories.